May 9, 2004
On Friday, Mike Melrose stuck his head in my office and said, “Who’s Betty Page?” I can’t begin to tell you how disappointed I am in my general sales manager—and he’s from Iowa and a horndog to boot.
I tried to jog Melrose’s memory bank, thinking that maybe he just didn’t recognize the name. No luck there .Then I hit him with the fact that Betty Page’s visage is everywhere in the culture. Her short black bangs and sultry curves are every bit as iconic as Marilyn Monroe’s blond features (in fact, they are really voluptuous bookends aren’t they?). Here, in all her pop-culture glory is the one and only Betty Page as she appears on a new book cover, which I also bought at Va-Va-Voom in Bisbee ($19.95 plus tax). Certainly, any American male over the age of 50 has seen this cult figure, and I do mean figure.
Legend says she disappeared in the seventies, was found by a sleuthing fan. She had become a born-again housewife, living in a trailer in the South, totally ashamed of all her cheesecake glory. Or, perhaps that's just an urban myth. I’d rather believe she lives in Tahoe with Steve McQueen’s son, and is squired to the slopes in a Bentley.
By the way, in the graphic novel The Rocketeer the femme fatale in the comic is obviously modeled on Betty Page, and in the movie she was portrayed by Jennifer Connelly (I think it was her first movie). Jennifer (A beautiful Mind) is the perfect modern genetic offspring of Ms. Page.
Speaking of hot babes, it’s Mother’s Day. I cleaned the kitchen this morning and did other “special” chores around the house. Of course, these are things any decent husband would do everyday but doesn’t. And then we act like we deserve a medal. Ahhh, Men, it's a wonder women even allow us in the house.
"The man who does not read good comic books has no advantage over the man who can't read them."
—Old Vaquero Saying